Monday, 2 October 2017

Three different Berlins

My journey from Schöneberg to Neukölln to Prenzlauerberg.

Ever since going freelance in March of 2015, I’ve lived an itinerant life. In addition to keeping apartments in Brussels and Berlin and traveling between them, I’ve also gone traveling in the Southern hemisphere over the winters.

It’s been a fantastic and enriching experience, but today I’m reining it in. I’m on the train from Berlin to Brussels now, having given up my Berlin apartment. The back-and-forth was just getting too exhausting - I had to pick one city or the other. Professionally, that city has to be Brussels - at least for the moment. But that’s a subject for another blog entry.

Sunday, 1 October 2017

The future of Europe - Macron vs. Lindner

This week, Emmanuel Macron threw down the gauntlet for his vision of a stronger, more federal European Union. But his bold words were tempered by the election result in Germany two days earlier. And just a few days later, violence in Catalonia further undermined his vision of European unity.

Sunday, 24 September 2017

The speeches podcast: May in Florence, Trump at UNGA

It's a week of speeches - Theresa May asking for extra Brexit time in Florence, Donald Trump ushering in the dog-eat-dog era at the UN, and Emmanuel Macron spelling out his vision of EU reform.

Friday, 22 September 2017


Facing increasing panic over a looming exit deadline in March 2019, the Theresa May has called for a ‘transition period’ in which the UK loses its EU voting power but still has to follow its rules. It could easily turn permanent.

Desperate to salvage Brexit talks which have gone off the rails, British Prime Minister Theresa May gave a much-anticipated speech in Florence today. She surely hopes it will stem the panic over the country’s lack of preparedness for the ‘cliffs edge’. That is March 29, 2019, when the country must leave the EU.

There is now little prospect that an agreement on Britain’s post-Brexit relationship with the EU can be agreed by that date. And so the prime minister had little choice but to do something to calm the jitters of British businesses and markets. 

Friday, 15 September 2017

Sunday, 10 September 2017

Should Germans stop speaking English in Berlin?

A rising star in Merkel's CDU party has criticized Germans in Berlin for speaking too much English, calling them "elitist hipsters". Is he right to say the omnipresence of English in Berlin is exclusionary?